Chapter 196: Friends (Third)
When Bai Yunfei turned his head, six figures made their way into his line of sight. Ye Zhiqiu, Mo Xiaoxuan, Xi Yan, Zhong Xuhao, Liu Mang, and one more person right next to Ye Zhiqiu were all walking together to meet up with Bai Yunfei. This new addition to the group was Tian Yuhang, the youngster with the 'best' talent in the fire affinity and also incredibly high talent in crafting.
"Brother Bai! No wonder we couldn't find you in your room, you were out here feeling the morning breeze already!" Zhong Xuhao laughed cheerfully as he approached.
Smiling, Bai Yunfei nodded to Zhong Xuhao and the rest of the group, "I wasn't feeling too well, so I thought I'd come here to relax a bit."
"Brother Bai, why do you feel that way?" Ye Zhiqiu asked with concern, "Everyone saw how determined you were that day. Even if you were unable to become a disciple, I've no doubt you are someone that'll go extremely far in life."
"Brother Bai, don't be so hard on yourself! You're the strongest student in the newest group of students! Even brother Ye said he wasn't as strong as you! You're only nineteen, but you're already a late-stage Soul Sprite; that's something no student in the inner school or even any disciple can boast of! Your talent in crafting might be slightly below theirs, but your strength as a soul cultivator is far more amazing!!" The admiring voice of Mo Xiaoxuan rang out.
"Yea, that's right!" Zhong Xuhao piped up. "All of us really admire you, brother Bai! You really scared us all when your soulforce came exploding out the other day, haha... you made it to the inner school at least. Liu Mang and I weren't able to, so that's why we admire you so much!"
"You guys..." The amount of encouragement from everyone else had improved Bai Yunfei's mood. Nodding his thanks, he smiled, "Haha, don't worry then. I'm not so weak to be depressed about such a thing."
"Ah, before I forget, brother Bai, let me introduce you to Tian Yuhang. I believe you might remember him?" Ye Zhiqiu motioned to the young male next to him, "He is the one with the strongest talent in crafting out of us all. During the examinations, he beat me by three hundred meters."
Bai Yunfei was startled to hear this information. He knew that the two had made it past five kilometers, but the fact that Tian Yuhang had beaten Ye Zhiqiu was news to him.
"Brother Bai, I'm Tian Yuhang, but you can call me Yuhang! Brother Bai, you're super cool! Even my brothers back home weren't as cool as you-not even my oldest brother!!" Yu Tianhang displayed a pure smile on his face as he spoke with an equally honest voice. He looked to be a very honest child. It really did seem as if Tian Yuhang believed that Bai Yunfei was cooler than his oldest brother. At his age, many kids thought their oldest brothers were invincible.
"A-haha... little Hang, you're praising me a little too much. The amazing one here is you, I'm quite jealous of you." Bai Yunfei waved his hand with a laugh before turning to Ye Zhiqiu, "Brother Ye, I haven't congratulated you yet for becoming a disciple, so here it is. From here on out, you'll be a senior to us all, little Hang here will be a senior too in fact, haha..."
Whenever the headmaster or first elder took on a personal disciple, they were always called seniors to the rest of the students. Disciples had a hierarchy over the other students, so they were often much more carefree with the students. The hierarchy wasn't always based on when they entered the school, but sometimes based on age or strength. There were thousands of students after all.
Smiling, Ye Zhiqiu replied, "Brother Bai, you must be joking. What's with this talk about seniors? Let's dispense the formalities. From here on out, we are students of the same school. Call me by my name, and I'll call you Yunfei, alright?"
"Haha, alright! Then I'll call you Zhiqiu! Little Xuan, little Hao, you two will have the same as well! Don't treat us like strangers here, let's get along from here on out."
"Ah... I always wanted to be called 'senior' though..." Tian Yuhang softly spoke from the side.
That comment caused Zhong Xuhao to frown in disdain, "What a dreamer! You're only a kid. I'd never call you senior! Even if you're a disciple, you're still younger than me, so you'll be little brother Yuhang!"
"Hey hey! I'm not that much younger than you! Wait until we're in front of the headmaster and the elders, we'll see if you'll call me senior or not then!" Tian Yuhang was young, but he was unhesitant to to get into a fight should one happen.
"You..." An angry knot appeared over Zhong Xuhao's head.
And so, everyone burst out into happy laughter.
By high noon of the second day, Bai Yunfei and the other ninety-five people that made it into the Crafting School were led by Xiao Nanren to the mountain peak where the main halls were. Passing through the vast hallways and through the many gateways, they finally arrived at an abnormally wide hall.
There was an order to how the group walked. Ye Zhiqiu and Tian Yuhang were leading the very front of the line behind Xiao Nanren, Bai Yunfei and the twenty-something students of the inner school were in the middle, and the rest of the students of the outer school followed behind.
No sooner did Bai Yunfei step into the hall did he feel an invisible pressure press against him. When he looked up, Bai Yunfei could see a single person seated at the very top. His very presence was like a mountain that would command deep respect at the very first sight.
The man wore a black brocaded robe that contrasted with the white-stranded hair combed behind his head. He was a tall figure, and his face was exceedingly ordinary-looking. Only his eyes were exceptional in that regard and they were filled with a dignified aura.
Just this sight alone was enough for Bai Yunfei to know that this person in front of him was the headmaster of the Crafting School.
To the seats below, the first elder Xiao Binzi was seated on the left. On the right was the second elder, Huangfu Nan and the third elder Cang Yu.
Song Lin, Li Tiechui, Lian Lingmin and the other disciples all stood right behind their respective elders.
"Pay your respects to the elders and the master." Xiao Nanren first bowed to Kou Changkong before addressing the students.
"All ninety-six of the newly entered students have been gathered here today."
Ye Zhiqiu and the other ninety-five students all immediately bowed to the elders in front of them, "Headmaster and elders, we have come to pay our respects to you!"
"Very good." Kou Changkong nodded. Sweeping a dignified eye across the crowd, he revealed a kind smile on his face. "Very good. This new generation of students is quite satisfactory. From today on out, you are all students of my Crafting School. No matter if you are students of the inner or outer school, you will adhere to our rules and dedicate yourselves to training and learning our arts. Work hard for the day when you attain achievement, for the glory of yourself, and for our Crafting School!"
After he finished his little speech, a short pause was given so that he could nod to Song Lin.
Stepping forward, Song Lin addressed the crowd with a robust voice. "I will now designate you all to one of the mountain points. Brothers and sisters, you must remember now; no matter if you are from the Western Point or the Southern Point, you are still students of the same school. You will not be inferior to one another, and you will not be superior to one another. Students of the outer school, do not feel dejected. The results of the examination are not clear-cut designations of your skill. As long as you focus on your training and work hard at learning the arts, you may one day earn the chance to enter the inner school!"
He paused here to look at the two figures leading the group, Ye Zhiqiu and Tian Yuhang. Smiling, he said, "Firstly, I would like to announce the two figures that managed to make their way to the five kilometer zone in the cave... Junior Ye, from today on, you will become a disciple of the second elder! As for you, junior Tian Yuhang, you will be a disciple to the headmaster!"
"Yes!!" Ye Zhiqiu and Tian Yuhang responded simultaneously. They were well prepared for this announcement, but their hearts were still beating rapidly from the excitement they felt.
Nodding, Song Lin looked to the six female students to the left, "The female juniors will be assigned to the Eastern Point. From here, your senior Lian Lingmin will guide you there when you leave."
"Mo Xiaoxuan, Xi Yan, Chen Hong, Yang Hua..." Song Lin continued to list off the next forty names. "You will all be students of the Western Point!"
The rest of the students would naturally be assigned to the Southern Point, but Song Lin announced their names anyways to make it official. After you leave, your seniors will take you to your future place of residence."
Everyone was excited with hearing the results of their examinations, but Bai Yunfei was among the few people who were stunned; Ye Zhiqiu and the others in their group had turned their heads to look at Bai Yunfei as well.
Out of all the names Song Lin read, Bai Yunfei's name hadn't been mentioned!!